SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
- Jesus goes through a trial, a beating, and is killed through crucifixion. Through it all he never objects, never complains, because this was all part of the plan: Jesus came to earth to die, so he wasn't surprised by this nor did he want to get out of it.
- At the moment of Jesus’ death, the curtain in the Temple is torn in half from top to bottom. This curtain was the barrier between the "Holy Place" and the "Most Holy Place." The Most Holy Place contained sacred articles of the Jewish religion and was off limits to everyone except the High Priest, who only went in once a year on the Day of Atonement. Entering this room was considered entering into the presence of God. In fact, before the priest entered the Most Holy Place, he would tie a rope around his ankle so that if he did something wrong and was struck dead by God, the body could be dragged out without anyone else having to enter the Most Holy Place, because only the High Priest could enter the presence of God. When Jesus dies, God himself rips the curtain open. The idea is that through Jesus' death, God has made a way for everyone to enter the most holy place, to come into the presence of God, by having a relationship with him through Jesus.
SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
- We see in this chapter that Jesus is not easily offended, and does not jump to defend himself. Part of being like Jesus for people today is to not be easily offended or quick to be defensive. Does that describe you?
- Jesus died (what many consider the most painful and humiliating death ever known to man) and took on the sins of the world (which was far worse for him than the pain and humiliation of crucifixion) so that you could come to God and have relationship with him. That is the most astonishing thing that has ever happened, and that mankind has ever heard.
NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
- What is something that offends you? In what situations do you find yourself becoming defensive? If you want to follow in the way of Jesus, ask God to change that in you.
- Do you really appreciate the death of Jesus for you, or has it become something you take for granted? Take a few minutes to pray about it, asking God to fill your heart with gratitude for the sacrifice he made for you.